What to do if your client is unhappy with your proposed solution?
Reading time: 4 min.
1. Listen Actively

1.1 Calm down; please don’t take the client’s feedback as an insult, don’t be offended, don’t get angry, don’t be upset. Be respectful, caring, grateful and friendly. Emphasize that you are focused on delivering maximum value to the client.

1.2 Not only listen carefully, but also direct the client’s feedback through the prism of his key goals, pains and needs. Find out the reasons for dissatisfaction and understand what the client wants to get from working with you.

2. Assess Fairly

2.1 Having collected the client’s arguments, emotions (dissatisfaction, concerns and fears) in one table, evaluate how much they influence the solution. Make sure you and the client are on the same page and there are no misunderstandings. It happens that the problem is not in the solution itself, but in its perception by the client, in communication, etc.

2.2 If the problem is just a misunderstanding, eliminate the causes. If you see that the problem is not a misunderstanding, but real weaknesses in your solution, prepare options for modifying and changing your solution.

3. Offer Alternatives

3.1 Based on key goals, pain points and client needs, as well as feedback elements (described in the previous paragraph of the article), prepare and present new solutions.

3.2 When preparing and presenting new solutions, be sincere in your desire to bring maximum benefit and approach it carefully and from the heart. Please do not create solutions for the sake of solutions.

4. Communicate Clearly

4.1 Be professional, calm, honest, friendly, confident, caring and grateful. Please remember that it is often not only what you say that is important, but also how you say it - watch your tone, gestures, etc.

4.2 Use simple words, do not use words with double meanings, complex phrases, jargons. Don’t hide behind clever phrases to appear smarter; be sincere and always keep the client’s goals and pains in focus.

5. Implement Feedback

5.1 Please remember: it is important not only to find the optimal solution, but also to implement it correctly; do everything possible to ensure that the solution is implemented as planned.

5.2 Thank the client (after all, thanks to his feedback, you came to this solution) and keep him updated as the solution is implemented and monitored.

6. Evaluate Outcomes

6.1 After implementing the solution and receiving the first sustainable positive results, conduct a feedback session with the client. How does he perceive the results? What value does he see?

6.2 Thank the client for the good teamwork, emphasizing that you appreciate his honest, constructive feedback and respect his professional approach.

Key points

1. Please remember: it doesn't matter how much work has been done or how many resources have been spent - if the client is unhappy, then none of it matters.

2. Base your solutions on the client's goals, pain points, and needs. Defend the interests of the client. Listen carefully, ask questions, find reasons for dissatisfaction. Be grateful for feedback.

Good luck!
Methodologist of Guidbase
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